Column: Should men pay on dates as reparations for the gender wage gap?

Article here. Excerpt:

'For years, I split the bill on dates. As a Latina from a lineage of women whose lives had been micro-managed by family patriarchs, I thought I was breaking bad generational patterns by interacting with men as equals rather than as providers.

But recently, I started getting pushback from some of my friends. They argued that because of the persisting gender pay gap, it’s actually now properly feminist to expect men to pay on first dates and contribute more financially in relationships.

One friend instructed me: “Don’t even think about reaching for your purse.” The thought of possibly coercing a man into paying for my dinner, however, just seemed wrong.

But many women believe that in our unequal times, it’s only fair for men to pay, and not just because men still out-earn women. Women also tend to spend more on date prep, such as makeup and manicures to meet female beauty standards. Some women believe men should cover the costs of not only dates, but transportation to and from. In a viral TikTok video, L.A. resident Gabby Fe, 27, says: “I expect a man to pay for the date. Yes, the whole entire date. That includes my Uber to the date and my Uber back to my house.”

She told me she sees this as compensation for women’s sacrifices in relationships. It’s also proof of serious interest. “I want to feel wanted,” she said.

But many straight men perceive such expectations as evidence of women’s low empathy for their struggles. In the U.S., men are now behind women in educational attainment and workforce participation. Amid these problems, women’s expectations of free dates can seem entitled or vindictive.'

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One at least, anyway.

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